The deal would trim 21st Century Fox's assets into a more focused slate of news and sports networks that can better compete in a changing media landscape, the report said. The deal will give Disney major TV production assets, but Disney can't own two broadcast networks. It would also prevent concerns about anti-trust practices, as Disney also owns ESPN and ABC News, which could be seen as direct competitors to Fox Sports and Fox News.
Disney was reportedly interested in buying National Geographic and FX Networks, among others.
With regard to "Deadpool", one fan noted, "The question is: If Disney buys 21st Century Fox, what happens to the current (and successful) trend of R-rated comic book movies?" Disney could take over the FX Networks, National Geographic television cable groups, Fox's global channels and, perhaps most significantly, 20th Century Fox movie and TV production operations. Presumably, it would take an insane amount of money to make it happen, but if Fox have already been willing to entertain sales talks, you have to feel that something is possible.
While no price has been quoted, nor has a deal been written thus far, it's now being reported that Fox's stock is up by more than 7% since reports of the talks were revealed via CNBC and The Wall Street Journal.
For Fox, reports of a Disney acquisition discussion come amid the company's pursuit of a majority stake in European pay TV operator Sky.
"In addition to the movie studio, TV production and global assets such as Star and BSkyB, Disney would also add entertainment networks such as FX and Nat Geo". A Disney spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment. It recently announced that it will be pulling its content from Netflix and launching its own, rival streaming platform.
Sheikh said he is surprised that the Murdoch family, which controls 21 Century Fox, would consider giving up control of the company. Disney shares rose 1.6% on the news.